Saturday, 12 May 2007

I swear I will stop whining...

I went out for a 5 mile run this morning - with my new super-deluxe Garmin Forerunner 305 (I feel like Harry Potter with his Nimbus 2000) AND my Nike + iPod. Here is the bad news: The Nike + said I ran 5.96 miles at a pace of 11:35 per mile. The Garmin said I ran 5 miles, at a pace of 13:46 per mile!!! Obviously I believe the Garmin. (When I was in my 30s, I race walked at a pace of just over 12 minutes per mile. I walked faster than I am currently running... oh well.)

So here is the good news: Had I known how very slow I am, I would never have trained to run a half-marathon. Never. So, the Nike + iPod served the purpose of encouraging me to train for this - even though I was delusional about my times. So, a week before the race, I am faced with the fact that I am slower than I thought I was when I was really worried about how slow I am. SO, (and I know I am a broken record, but please indulge me) I will just go out and have the best time I possibly can have, not as in pace, but as in a good time. This morning I ran into an old friend who is doing the same race, only he is doing the whole marathon. I told him of my concerns (is there a soul alive who hasn't heard my concerns?) and he was so sweet. He told me what many of you have said:

By being at the start line, I will be doing more than 99.9% of people. By getting across the finish line, I will have achieved my goal.

I am carrying around "Marathoning for Mortals" by John "The Penguin" Bingham, and reading and re-reading some of the motivational is a quote from the book:

"By getting to the starting line, you've already placed yourself in the top echelon of athletes. You may not be in the top tier of that race, but as a long-distance athlete, you are fitter, better trained, and more disciplined than 99 percent of the population that has ever lived. Remind yourself of that when you start to obsess about your pace or finish time."

Thank you to all of you kind commenters. I really really appreciate you.


Lisa - Slow & Steady said...

I've always thought the hardest part was puttng on my running shoes and getting out the door.

Try to enjoy the experience for what it is and have fun with it! Thing positive thoughts like "I'm doing it!!"

We'll be proud of you no matter what your finish time is. I've never run more than 8miles, so you have my awe already.

You should be proud of yourself as well. :)

Debbi said...

Great attitude, Mary Christine! You're going to be so proud of yourself for finishing, no matter what the time. That Penguin knows what he's talkin' about!

Marcy said...

Awwhhh you're not whining. I'm sure I'll be the SAME way once I get towards the date of my HM. I don't think it matters how fast you run, everyone is nervous in one aspect or another.

I agree with Lisa, we'll most definitely be proud of you no matter what time you come in!

Have you read John Bingham's other book "No Need For Speed"? I *think* that was the book that Lisa (J-Mom) read over before her HM, she said it's better than the other 2 books "Running For Mortals" and "Marathoning For Mortals"

Now go out there and have a good time! And if it sucks find the humor in it, that's usually how I cope LOL

Backofpack said...

Well, no wonder you stopped by my blog! No worries about time. I'll tell you a couple of things:

1) It's all about the experience, soak it up.
2) Run your comfortable pace.
3) Runners everywhere will admire you for getting out there and getting it done. You'll discover that runners are a great group who offer encouragement and enthusiasm to every runner on the course.
4) Once your race is over, continue to run and train. You'll mysteriously find yourself getting faster.

Look at me. A year ago I was a steady 12 min/mile. Now I'm often in the 11's and sometimes even dipping below that (and in marathons!). I run/walk 9/1 - it works!

Randy said...

Don't think about the time in this first event, I don't even like callig it a race, just look at it as a way to mark your place. Go out and FINISH and have a GREAT time. I know the Denver area and I'll bet the crowds will be out in style to cheer you, yes you on. They did for me in Oklahoma City two weeks ago and I had people calling my name as I would go by...I didn't even know them...silly me they were reading my bib...but hey, they were taking the time to read it and using my made me feel great...and even though your cyber running buds won't be there, we will be cheering you on as well.
Run your race, walk when you have to, take in plenty of fluids, listen to your body, don't be tempted to start too fast so that you have energy to be there at the finish. The miles are only a certain number of steps and then you are done. You are too close now to have doubts, just be the runner you have become and have an incredibly wonderful time!!!
Wow, who put that soap box under me?

ws said...

Everything is great advice - and, at the end of day, irrelevant of what your finishing time is, if you have a good time you'll train more, race more and get faster.

Chad in the Arizona Desert said...

Hey, look at it this way, no matter how slow or fast your first half marathon will still be your fastest half marathon and a PR! No pressure, just enjoy the scenery.